Yesterday I wrote about choice & how the most important thing you can do in your life is make a choice. What do you do after you make the choice? You change your perspective.
Perspective change is similar to the concept of creating a new life story which allows you to change your thoughts by creating a new version of your present situation (your story).
Similarly perspective change is just switching how you feel about a negative situation into more positive situation. Everything has both a positive & a negative side (at least on the surface, really it’s all the same stuff), so perspective change is just about literally switching is in your mind how you feel about something. What once was a burden now becomes a joy.
These are some of my more frequent hangups & the subsequent perspective change ‘antidotes’ to them:
- Negative– I waste my time learning about & doing so many different things, as opposed to focusing & becoming an expert on one thing. // Positive– This better allows me to make connections & BE connected. Ideas that wouldn’t normally come about, suddenly arise when you’re able to connect completely unrelated things. (Pluralism! Study both business advice & physics, sports & fashion & see what surprising new ideas may arise!)
- Negative– Like the previous one, I worry about my ideas, my writing, my art, my life wont seem cohesive (or make any sense). // Positive– “Don’t throw any of yourself away. Don’t worry about a grand scheme or unified vision for your work. Don’t worry about unity– what unifies your work is the fact that you made it. One day, you’ll look back & it will all make sense.” –Austin Kleon.
- Negative– I’m melodramatic, anxious, weird, loud, distracted. // Positive- I’m PASSIONATE, excited, interesting, enthusiastic, creative.
- Negative– I feel stuck, unproductive, BLOCKED. // Positive- It’s usually after we become stuck, when we’re desperate enough to quit, to just give up, that we have the BIG idea, that the answer shows up, that we create our best work. It’s like jumping into the proverbial abyss, you’re lost & alone & things are really shitty for a while, but then we come out the other side as even more magical creatures.
- Negative– I have so much to do// Positive- There’s so much I WANT TO DO.
- Negative– Things are so bad, I feel so lousy or sick or depleted or insert negative emotion here. // Positive– negative emotions are there for a reason, a lesson we haven’t learned yet or just the experience of contrast so that we really KNOW how good we got it. Negative emotions are usually the best time for growth, since we don’t like feeling this way we invest in soul searching. Negativity is the catalyst for positivity.
- Negative– I’m really scared to start this new project/ relationship/ job/ etc (this is how how I’ve been feeling lately with a new job looming in a week.) // Positive– I’m really EXCITED to be starting this new adventure. The opportunities for growth, learning, opportunity & connections are abundant. Who knows what this could lead to?
- Negative– I’m a big freakin failure! // Positive– We’ve all heard so much about how good failure is, fail hard & fail often, failure leads to success if you don’t give up, yadda yadda. But really, everything is one big experiment to see what works/ what resonates in life. So if something failed, it’s just the results of an experiment– that thing didn’t work in your life, could it be tweaked or altered? Keep going, try a new experiment. You don’t feel bad testing a new product to see if it fits in your life, you think “hey maybe this will work,” & if it doesn’t you shrug & try another thing. There is no real failure & there is no real success, it’s all just one big experiment.
- Negative- I get bored easily, leave books midway through, forget about projects on occasion. // Positive– If I always have multiple things going on, if I get tired of one of them I can go back & work on the others with fresh eyes. Tired of a painting? Work on my website for a while, tired of that, go back to the painting & do that for a while. Eventually the things that need to get done, get done, & everything left behind wasn’t a proper fit for me anyway.
These are just a few ideas off the top of my head, but really anything negative can be a positive. (It’s a PARADOX). Everything positive can be negative too, but as I said yesterday, why intentionally focus on the negative?
What are some other examples of perspective change you use or could use in your own life? I’m always looking for new things to try out to increase my maximum amount of joy!